By making the move to a home that’s a better fit for now, you can spend less time on home maintenance, free up your finances and have more to invest in enjoying the lifestyle you deserve. But we know that while it might make sense to downsize, it’s not always the easiest decision to make – saying goodbye to the family home, letting go of the backyard where so many memories were made. So, here are a few things to help you decide if downsizing is right for you.
Life changes. Children grow up and move out to pursue their own lives, job situations change, relationships change, and what we want in life changes over time too. The home that once fitted your life like a glove might now be too big, too much to maintain or too much of a strain on your finances. Whatever your motivations, you probably feel it’s time to invest in a change that will allow you to live your life better.
With fewer rooms and a smaller, low-maintenance yard, you’ll have more time to invest in things higher up on your priority list, like enjoying time with family and friends or exploring new places. Many downsizers opt for a home they can ‘lock up and leave’ (and not think about maintaining) while they take off on holidays and weekends away.
Downsizing can have significant financial benefits. While moving costs, stamp duty and a few other expenses still need to be factored into any move, most homebuyers find themselves in a better financial position after downsizing.
By selling your existing home and buying a home that costs less, you can choose to pay off your mortgage and avoid paying further interest on it – and you’ll likely free up money that has been tied up in assets, so you can enjoy it elsewhere.
A smaller and newer home generally also means lower running costs (less use of gas, water and electricity) and lower maintenance costs in the long term, which can add up to significant savings over time.
If your new home is your primary residence, you may not need to pay capital gains tax. And as of July 1, 2018, Australians aged 65 and over, who have owned their home for more than 10 years, are able to downsize and invest up to $300,000 in surplus funds into their superannuation accounts – an Australian Federal Government incentive to help retirees make sound financial decisions while also making larger homes available for younger families.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to downsizing, and the option you choose will need to take into consideration your individual needs and preferences, your finances and whether or not you are ready to relocate.
We can step you through your options so you can get a feel for the different property types and work out the best fit for you. Depending on your land orientation, home size preferences and budget, we can tailor a specific solution to meet your needs. Here are some you might like to consider.
A smaller, new, single-storey home can give you the sense that you’re not actually downsizing … until you find you have more free time on your hands. Single-storey homes have all the room you need, but are built on smaller blocks that require minimal upkeep. And without stairs or a second floor to worry about, there are fewer safety issues to consider for younger children or anyone with mobility issues.
A townhome with a private, easy-to-maintain courtyard, or even a two-storey home on a smaller block, can be a lifestyle upgrade. With ample space and storage upstairs and downstairs, spare rooms for guests, and large entertaining areas – minus the maintenance of a large backyard – these homes offer a convenient and luxurious solution to downsizing.